Mission: Books For Africa was founded in 1988 by Tom Warth, a Minnesota publisher whose dream was to ship donated books to the children of Africa. Warth's visit to a Ugandan library, where books were almost non-existent, inspired him to create a system for collecting discarded books from American schools, libraries and publishers to send to Africa. Books For Africa remains the largest shipper of donated text and library books to the African continent, shipping over 28 million books to 49 different countries since 1988. Over the past 12 months BFA has shipped 2.2 million books valued at $28.3 million to 22 African countries, with an additional 616 computers and 15 brand new law libraries.
Results: 2013 marks BFA's 25 Anniversary! We are celebrating the 28 million books shipped to 49 African countries thus far, and re-committing our efforts to send even more quality books in the years to come.
Target demographics: African schools and libraries that do not have sufficient books to support learning and recreational reading.
Direct beneficiaries per year: Each container shipped supplies enough books for ten school libraries. BFA ships about 2 containers every week!
Geographic areas served: all of Africa
Programs: Books for africa sent 208 shipments of approximately 2,400,000 books with an estimated value of $33,100,000 to 20 african countires. Books for africa receives funds for the shipment of books to africa, and this is the organization's only program. Additionally, books for africa allows donors to target donations to specific countries and provides feedback to donor when books have been shipped to their countries. 99% of total expenses are spent on program related expenses.
BFA is an organization that is proud of it's Minnesota roots, but maintains a global outlook. BFA has not only done incredible work in the countries it delivers books to in Africa, but it also brings more cultural awareness to the greater Twin Cities area.
Books for Africa is an attempt to provide access to tools necessary to spread and achieve literacy. This organization takes books in full crates across seas to create a full, complete library available to the community. Its efforts are widespread and non-discriminatory. Not only are Books for Africa's efforts noteworthy, but the means of achieving them are distinctive; groups nation-wide-- from private individuals to college campuses-- donate books which are then used to create the library. This approach allows a wide variety of people to be involved. Books for Africa create a sense of community, a positive green effect (Less books in landfills--what a waste that would be!) and a positive effect on the world as a whole.